Well, that’s what he would be called today. Peter Smith was the second Cray Valley boy to qualify for training at the Royal Air Force College Cranwell. School Captain Ben Brown preceded him by a couple of years and I had the privilege of following Peter in October 1965.

By chance I was recently given the October and November 1966 editions of ‘Flying Review International’. Right across the centrefold (including the rusty staples) was an advertisement for Cranwell. I immediately recognised Peter in the centre of the ad and contacted him to confirm. He remembered it well but said that unfortunately two of the other Officer Cadets were later killed in aircraft accidents.


Peter R.M.Smithin RAF Cranwell advertisement.

Peter R.M.Smith in RAF Cranwell advertisement. CLICK TO ENLARGE


‘Sports Filmed As Boys Break Records’

In 1964, it was Peter who gave me my very first experience of flying. At 63 shillings an hour Peter and I took off from Biggin Hill airfield in a rickety old red Tiger Moth and I was hooked. On the next flight with Peter I took a camera and here are two of the shots captured on school Sports Day 1964.






Even the Kentish Times thought it was newsworthy!




How dramatic! Even then the press were getting something wrong as usual – ‘cellulose’?


Do you have memories of Cray you wish to share? Or perhaps you appeared in an advertisement or on television at some time in your life. If you have a record of this we would like to see it and perhaps publish it on the Blog or include it in the website. Please send any material to colin@cvths.com.


Colin Cadle
Torquay, Devon
9th November 2016


One response »

  1. 686661 Crawford John. says:

    Cor! get your knees brown, I had my first Radfan medel by then. I think that I could have been the first Halton Brat, 96 Entry, from CVTS. But no doubt I will be corrected.


Please leave your comments here (play nicely)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.